Friday, July 1, 2016

High West American Prairie Blended Bourbon

VITALS:
- $35
- 92 Proof
- Batch No. 2

American Prairie is a blended bourbon from High West. As far as its offerings go, it is usually one of the more affordable ones.  According to website, though the ratios aren't disclosed, it's a blend of (1) 2-year old bourbon from MGP; (2) 6-year old Kentucky bourbon from an undisclosed source; and (3) 13-year old Kentucky bourbon from an undisclosed source. So we get complete transparency that it's all sourced bourbon, but ratios, sources and  mashbills on the Kentucky bourbons are still kept secret.

The nose is malty, making me double check to make sure it was, in fact, a blend of bourbons, and not simply a blended whiskey. It also gave off hints of walnut and baking spices. It had a very "bread baking" kind of smell to it.

The first sip was interesting. I immediately caught a mix of brown sugar and peanuts. Quite frankly, I've never noticed such a combination in a whiskey before, at least not that I can recall. It's a sweet bourbon, but certainly not offensively so.

On the back end, I caught notes of anise and rye, leading me to believe that some, if not all, of the bourbons in this blend were high-rye. Despite these spicy notes, it remained sweet on the back end as well, mixing a mild citrus flavor with dark cherry flavors.

The interesting mix of flavors, particularly on the back end, was very enjoyable. Honestly, at first I wasn't overly impressed with American Prairie, thinking it was a somewhat simple bourbon. However, the more I drank the more I noted the complexity of it, and the more I appreciated the complementary flavors that came through both on the front and back ends.

In fact, I realized almost too late just how much I liked this bourbon, particularly for the price, as I was pretty much to the bottom of the bottle before I knew it. Almost subconsciously I kept going right back for another pour, despite having other options available to me. This is a very nice bourbon for the price, and certainly the fact that it's blended and source should not keep you away from enjoying an otherwise very tasty pour!

Grade: A-

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